Category Archives: Personal Retreats

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Time to Pause, Move Toward the Center

Time to Pause We have a labyrinth in our backyard which, weather permitting, is where I do my walking prayer every day.  One day, while I was preparing for a group to come and join us for a walk, my husband caught this photo of our dog, Bella, sitting in one of her contemplative postures…
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Unpredictable: The Invitation to Come Home

Unpredictable: The Invitation to Come Home My summer had surprising experiences with several unpredictable happenings. My body was telling me in no uncertain terms to pay attention to my aging process. More than one round of issues with blood pressure and wellness told me that I needed to let go of a few events I…
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We Dare To Hope (Part 2 of 2)

We Dare to Hope (Part 2 of 2) In part one of this reflection, I wrote that we much believe our collective Christian narrative, and then we need to tell our story.  Here let me say a few things about what sharing our Christian hope might look like. Take Opportunities First, we take the opportunities…
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Desire, Perseverance, Making Our Way: Reflections from the Monastic Retreat

Desire, Perseverance, Making Our Way Reflections from the Monastic Retreat On a Sunday evening in mid-June, the annual Community Retreat began at St. Paul’s Monastery.  The Sisters assembled in their usual places in the glowing Chapel, lit by the summer sky in the clerestory windows, joined by several Oblates, Benedictine Associates, and me.  The white…
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Stability: The Benedictine Value of Locatedness

Stability The Benedictine Value of Locatedness An old saying touts, “Location, location, location” as the key to property value. Benedictine spirituality also values location, but not the way your real estate broker might. A prominent Benedictine principle is stability, or staying put within a particular community rather than continually traveling on to somewhere else. For…
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Retreat: Making Time to Remember Our Belovedness

Retreat Making Time to Remember Our Belovedness Life’s challenges have a way of growing up all around us. I sometimes picture myself standing in a field surrounded by weeds I cannot see over. I do my best to push them out of the way, look around them, and pretend like they are not there. But,…
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Sabbath: Well-being, Not Endless Work

While modern Christians do not often practice Sabbath as regularly as our Jewish brothers and sisters, we still need times when we set aside our task lists to remember that we are created in the image of a God who rested after amazing acts of creation. We need times to step outside of our regular work routines and remember that we are “human beings,” not just “human doings.” These times remind us we are beloved just as we are and that God’s love does not depend on us producing or creating or doing anything.
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Fostering Community: What might IT be?

Fostering Community: What might IT be? I am dazzled by the gold thread of a meaningful conversation and, as if with the paw of a cat, I pull on it and chase it, until it unravels.  That is how I might describe my fall week of residency at the Benedictine Center as I moved in…
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A New Story

This reflection was written in response to an experience at the Benedictine Center called "Divine Spark: Kindling the Fires of Ministry." A New Story Light from Your presence Sparks my soul The spark and careful tending start a small flame Writing, reflection, good conversation partners, prayer and lectio breathe life into the flame The challenges…
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Saturated with Peace: Experiencing Personal Retreat

Saturated with Peace: Experiencing Personal Retreat I’m not sure what I was seeking over a decade ago, when I signed up for a 24 hour “teacher’s retreat” at St. Paul’s Monastery. It was mid-August, my time to squeeze in one more week of summer’s leisure pace before the craziness of teaching three grade levels in…
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